Death Means Victory To Crenshaw In 95

By George WhiteFebruary 12, 2001, 5:00 pm
'I believe in fate,' said Ben Crenshaw at the 1995 Masters. It was difficult not to, considering the events that had just transpired.
On Wednesday of Masters week, Crenshaw and Tom Kite were burying their longtime coach, Harvey Penick. On Thursday they hurried back to make their tee times. And on Sunday at sundown, Crenshaw was standing in the winner's ceremony at the Masters. 'Fate had dictated another championship, as it has done so many times,' Crenshaw said.
And indeed it had. There was simply no way Ben was going to lose. Harvey Penick, it seems, made sure of that. 'I don't think there was any stopping Ben, really,' said Davis Love III, who finished one shot back of Crenshaw. 'I think it was just to be that Ben would play well.'
Jose Maria Olazabal was the leader at the end of first round, a round in which Crenshaw shot 70 and trailed by four. Jay Haas shot a 64 the second round and led with Crenshaw now just two behind after shooting 67. Crenshaw finally got into a tie for the lead after Round 3, his 68 the same score as Brian Henninger to set up the last day of play.
Crenshaw came into the tournament missing three out of four cuts. The problem, strange enough for the man who is one of the world's great putters, was his putting. Just two weeks before the Masters and Penick's death, Ben had a putting lesson in the bedroom of the elderly man who was bedridden and could hardly speak. And he had a lesson from Augusta National caddy Carl Jackson, who has worked for him at every Masters since 1976. Together, they made the difference and Crenshaw couldn't have been more deadly accurate as he went about his business on Sunday.
It was the putter - Little Ben, he calls it - that repeatedly held Greg Norman and Love at bay. Not once the entire week did he three-putt. His most memorable stroke was a 13-foot left-to-right stroke at 17 that gave him a two-stroke lead going into the final hole.
'I played 17 like a dream,' he said. 'I hit a little 9-iron pin-high left and then hit the prettiest putt I ever hit. The second it off my putter, I could tell it was heading home.'
Norman, Love and Crenshaw were tied for the lead late in the back nine, but Norman went by the wayside when he bogeyed 17 with a 60-foot putt. Love bogeyed the 16th with three putts. Crenshaw birdied 16 with a five-foot roller, birdied 17 and got to the green jacket ceremony.
He bent in uncontrollable emotion it was over, helped gently upright by Jackson. 'I let it all go,' Crenshaw said. 'I couldn't wait any longer.'
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    Football coach hates golf: Don't need practice swearing

    By Jason CrookApril 20, 2018, 10:15 pm

    Some football coaches are a little more talkative than others. On one side of the spectrum, there's Bill Belichick. On the other sits Washington State football coach Mike Leach.

    Leach always delivers the goods, and when asked recently if he liked golf, he didn't hold back:

    As wrong as the 57-year-old is on the topic (golf is awesome), the man makes some hilarious points:

    • “It’s boring. I don’t care where that ball goes.”

    • "Golfers are always practicing their swing. But you know what I never did? I never practice fishing in my living room.”

    • "They'll line up over the ball and they'll say they're going to do something that you can't do with a sniper rifle and a scope, but they're going to do it with a stick and a ball."

    • “Golf’s pretty much for people that don’t swear effectively enough or need practice. And so there are people that need golf, and I don’t think I do.”

    So in conclusion, it's confirmed: Mike Leach - not a golf guy.

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    Quiros takes 1-shot lead in Morocco

    By Associated PressApril 20, 2018, 8:22 pm

    RABAT, Morocco - Alvaro Quiros shot a solid 2-under 70 in windy conditions to push into a one-shot lead after two rounds of the Trophee Hassan II in Morocco on Friday.

    Quiros fought the elements, carding seven birdies and five bogeys to move to 7 under overall and take the outright lead at the halfway point of the European Tour event.

    The Spaniard was one clear of Andrew Dodt, who moved into contention with a 4-under 68 at the Royal Golf Dar Es Salam course. Dodt dropped two shots in his first six holes but the Australian recovered from that shaky start to collect four birdies and an eagle.

    Full-field scores from the Trophee Hassan II

    Erik van Rooyen of South Africa was another shot back in third on 5 under after his 71.

    Bradley Dredge of Wales, who shared the first-round lead with Quiros, slipped off the pace with a 1-over 73. He's tied for fourth with Austin Connelly of Canada (71), 4 under par and three shots behind Quiros.

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    Bogey-free Moore shares Valero lead

    By Will GrayApril 20, 2018, 8:20 pm

    Amid the swirling winds on a difficult track at the Valero Texas Open, Ryan Moore has yet to blink.

    Moore was one of only two players among the 156-man field to go bogey-free during the opening round at TPC San Antonio, and he's now the only player still boasting a clean scorecard after a second-round 67 that included five birdies and the rest pars. At 9 under, the veteran shares the lead with Zach Johnson and was three shots clear of any other player at the end of the morning wave.

    "Really, around this golf course what matters is the right distance," Moore told reporters. "You can get in some pretty tough spots if you're long and short. So I kind of hit it the right distance all day, gave myself plenty of good birdie opportunities and didn't stress myself out too much with too many up-and-downs."

    While many players struggle to find a true offseason, Moore took nearly three months off between starts at the OHL Classic at Mayakoba and Waste Management Phoenix Open. During that time he shed nearly 20 pounds thanks to changes to his diet and teamed up with a new swing coach, Drew Steckel, in December.

    The results have been solid if not spectacular, as Moore tied for fifth at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and finished T-16 last week at the RBC Heritage.

    "It's been solid golf, especially the last few weeks. I haven't got a ton out of it," Moore said. "The putter just wasn't there. So this week, just got a little more comfortable with the putter and knocked a few putts in that kind of matter early in my rounds, and it's going in. That's kind of what's been missing lately."

    Moore had a breakthrough season in 2016 that included his victory at the John Deere Classic and spot on the Ryder Cup team, but he hasn't sniffed career win No. 6 since a T-3 finish at the Sentry Tournament of Champions 16 months ago. Should he keep a clean card this weekend in San Antonio, his chances to end that victory drought appear bright.

    "I played some really nice golf yesterday, I just controlled the ball nicely all the way around and was bogey-free yesterday, so thought, 'Let's go try and do that again,'" Moore said. "So to play in tough, windy conditions, to go bogey-free (again), it was some good solid golf."

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    Former champ Z. Johnson surges at Valero

    By Will GrayApril 20, 2018, 7:31 pm

    Midway through his opening round at the Valero Texas Open, Zach Johnson appeared far closer to a missed cut than a spot on the leaderboard.

    Johnson initially struggled in the winds at TPC San Antonio, playing his first 13 holes in 3 over. But he eagled No. 14 and closed with three more birdies to post a 2-under 70, then went unconscious during a second-round 65 where he made six birdies over his first 10 holes.

    It added up to a 9-under total at the halfway point, and instead of packing his bags the two-time major champ now shares the lead with Ryan Moore.

    "You just never know. That's the beauty of this game," Johnson told reporters. "I didn't have anything going putting-wise. I felt like I was hitting some solid shots and wasn't getting rewarded, and you've just got to stay in it. You've got to persevere, grind it out, fight for pars. Shoot, I made some good pars all while being 3 over. You just never know."

    Johnson won this event in both 2008 and 2009, but that was when it was held across town at La Cantera Golf Club. Since the switch to TPC San Antonio in 2010, he has only one top-10 finish and two missed cuts, including last year's early exit with consecutive rounds of 74.

    But Friday he played like a man unaware of the venue shift, with four straight birdies on Nos. 12-15 and a hole-out eagle from the greenside bunker on the par-4 fifth hole. His closing bogey on No. 9 was his first dropped shot in the last 25 holes.

    "The confidence is there, and when you can step on the tee with this kind of wind, you trust your clubs and trust your ball, that's pretty important," Johnson said. "I felt good. It was hard, I'm not going to deny that. That was one of the better 27-hole stretches that I've had in a long time."

    Johnson's 65 was his first sub-70 score since an opening-round 69 at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, a span of 12 stroke-play rounds. The veteran has made every cut in 11 starts this season, but his T-8 finish at the RSM Classic in November remains his only top-10 finish.

    "I felt really good coming into the week," Johnson said. "Confidence was there, it just wasn't showing up on the scorecard."